Accredit: verb ac·cred·it \ə-ˈkre-dət\
: to say that something is good enough to be given official approval
: to recognize or vouch for as conforming with a standard
: to consider or recognize something as outstanding
– Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary
Some of AAMET's most important principles are openness and clarity (in other words “transparency”). As a membership organisation, we operate with consensus and sharing processes. Our aim is for EFT to become ever more widely available for good in the world and for it to be practised ethically, safely and effectively.
Members of our Board and Teams work on a voluntary basis steadfastly toward that aim and the organisation has registered charitable status. Safe and effective use of EFT depends on standards of education and training for those using/practising it; thus establishing and maintaining educational standards for EFT is of utmost importance to AAMET. We therefore have a defined AAMET syllabus for EFT training at all levels. We use the terms “certified” and “accredited,” and we have an Accreditation Coordinator.
Definition of Terms:
Certification and Accreditation
We use the terms “Certification” and “Accreditation” to refer to the process by which practitioners, first learn EFT from their AAMET Master Trainer and the trainer assesses that they have reached the standard required to start to practise safely and effectively (certification), and then secondly become accredited by AAMET (accreditation).
Certification is issued to trainees by the trainer only. Accreditation is a direct interaction with AAMET involving both the trainee and an AAMET-accredited Trainer. The trainee practitioner joins AAMET as a student level member and takes AAMET’s Practitioner (or Advanced Practitioner) online examination, which is assessed by AAMET, independently of the trainer’s assessment. When a student passes this examination and s/he has also trained with an AAMET Master Trainer who confirms to AAMET that the student has met the criteria laid down within the AAMET Training Syllabus, that student can upgrade to Accredited Certified Practitioner level member (or Accredited Certified Advanced Practitioner, respectively). The Practitioner is “certified” by his/her trainer and then “accredited” by AAMET.
This accreditation process is a form of organisational accreditation, for which the official term used in UK is “internal accreditation”. Many complementary therapy courses are internally accredited by various professional organisations and associations.
The other type of accreditation is national-level accreditation, known officially in UK as “external accreditation”. External accreditation is when an educational institution seeks recognition of its courses and qualifications by an external, usually government-run regulator such as Ofqual in the UK or NCFHE in Malta (www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ofqual/about). It is an ultimate level of recognition and therefore also extremely rigorous, detailed, exacting, uncompromising even regarding certain requirements. To illustrate, an example would be the requirement for every examiner marking UK GCSE and A-Level national exam papers to attend standardisation meetings for a day where the minutiae of every mark for the exam are agreed. Clearly, external accreditation is usually only taken up by organisations with significant resources available to commit to this.
AAMET Accreditation Process: History
In 2012-14, when AAMET first committed to move toward an accreditation process, our then Chair, Helena Fone, ambitiously took the additional step toward external accreditation with NCFHE (National Commission for Further and Higher Education) Malta. Her intention was to create a new Master Trainer Course and for that course to be accredited by NCFHE Malta.
Helena announced the launch of the new AAMET internal accreditation process that commenced in 2014, alongside the move toward external accreditation of the new Master Trainer course. There was a certain lack of clarity as a result of introducing so many changes within a short period of time. We wish to redress that confusion by spelling out the chronology of events and providing a clear statement of how we intend to move forward.
The 2014 AAMET Master Trainer internal accreditation process required all existing AAMET Trainers and Trainers of Trainers to:
- Study a course manual that Helena had created
- Take an exam that tested knowledge from the course manual plus knowledge of AAMET’s EFT training structures and requirements for certification and accreditation
- If necessary, update their website according to AAMET trainer requirements
- Provide details of courses delivered and number of trainees during the preceding year
- Provide details of their supervision/mentoring and CPD record
- Provide personal references from both a supervisor and someone who had trained with them
- Sign a Trainer’s Contract
Those who did not complete that process within 18 months from 1st January 2014 were not able to continue training as AAMET Trainers.
This is a process of internal accreditation. Helena devised the process, working with members of AAMET’s Training Board and Accreditation Panel. The Accreditation Panel led by Christine Sutton, Accreditation Coordinator then implemented the process. Trainer accreditation was mandatory. Alongside this there was an optional internal accreditation process for Practitioners and Advanced Practitioners, which also involved provision of CPD and supervision/mentoring records, references, website check and taking the AAMET online exam for the relevant level.
Since 2014 anyone trained to Practitioner or Advanced Practitioner level by an AAMET Accredited Master Trainer has automatically gained "accredited” status upon completion of the certification and registration requirements. Many AAMET Certified Practitioner-level members who gained certification before 2014 took advantage of this new system concomitantly to upgrade their skills and knowledge from Certified Practitioner to Accredited Certified Advanced Practitioner level. The majority of AAMET Practitioner and Advanced Practitioner level members have now achieved AAMET-accredited status. This is encouraging as eventually the old, non-accredited Certified Practitioner and Certified Advanced Practitioner designations will be withdrawn. Currently those members with accredited status have listing advantages, including a full personal profile page on our new website that was launched in October 2016.
Alongside this comprehensive internal accreditation process a move toward external accreditation of the Master Trainer course to be used for training new AAMET Master Trainers took place, perhaps triggering some confusion between the two processes. For the purpose of achieving clarity, transparency and an accurate record, a historical chronology is provided at the end of this article.
AAMET is an international organisation with EFT Master Trainers spread across the globe. It is the only EFT organisation to be structured formally as a not-for-profit professional association with an Executive Board comprised entirely of volunteers. Our volunteers are drawn internationally from a range of long-standing professional EFT-ers, each with a passion for the promotion and teaching of EFT that honours Gary Craig’s original EFT instruction, incorporating also some of Gary Craig’s newer Gold Standard EFT developments.
A majority of Gary Craig’s EFT Founding Masters are/have been members of, or otherwise support AAMET; EFT Founding Master Judy Byrne is on our Board. Ann Adams, who ran the original EFT Master Programme together with Gary Craig is developing a new, advanced Master Practitioner Programme exclusively linked to AAMET, which will be taught in modules by EFT Founding Masters Emma Roberts, Sue Beer, Judy Byrne, Nancy Gnecco. Our Training Board and Accreditation Panel operate with great diligence and commitment to ongoing excellence with EFT.
For such an international organisation, external accreditation is beset with logistical challenges. External accreditation in any case is known to be resource-intensive. It is predominantly a national-level procedure and would lend itself imperfectly to an international network.
Internal accreditation, on the other hand, serves both our international organisation and EFT well. We are able to gather together international experts in the field of EFT and achieve consensus regarding quality and educational standards. We can use assessment procedures that best lend themselves to the situation and are nonetheless rigorous. We can involve and grow our network of first-class accredited EFT Trainers. We continue to involve consultants who specialise in assisting in external accreditation procedures to inform our internal accreditation procedures, ensuring that we have the ‘best of both’ – high quality, well-designed accreditation processes that suit both our international organisation and the nature and ethos of EFT in particular.
We have no intention of engaging further with NCFHE Malta. We will continue to strengthen and improve our training and assessment structures, our syllabi and materials, our support for our Trainers, consistently working closely with our own international teams. As in many complementary therapy organisations, our internal accreditation programme effectively serves our trainers, members and our organisation’s aims.
AAMET External Accreditation involvement – Chronology 2012-2017
2012 – 2014
- Helena Fone, who was based in Malta, initiated production of a Master Trainer course structure and course manual with NCFHE Malta for it to be externally accredited as a Level 4 (1st year degree level) qualification within the European Qualification Framework (EQF). Helena compiled the Master Trainer Course Manual and AAMET purchased the copyright for this manual from her.
Autumn 2013: AAMET’s internal accreditation process for commencement January 2014 was announced.
June 2014: Helena Fone stepped down from AAMET Chair and Executive Board, having completed the 5 years’ service to which she had originally committed (2009-2014)
2014: Prolonged and detailed negotiations continued to progress with NCFHE Malta to meet their standards for acceptance of the Master Trainer Course within EQF at Level 4
2014 – 2015: Shoshana Garfield, PhD, AAMET Vice Chair, continued and completed the work. NCFHE eventually confirmed that the course met with their standards for recognition and external accreditation. AAMET celebrated this success with the announcement that the Master Trainer Course was externally accredited with NCFHE Malta.
2015: NCFHE unexpectedly then informed us that they additionally required provision of qualifications of all those who would be delivering and assessing the AAMET Master Trainer Course. AAMET no longer had any Trainers in Malta. Furthermore, AAMET’s Master Trainers of Trainers were spread across the globe. In light of all this, it was neither authentic nor viable to complete registration as a Maltese educational institution.
2017: It was brought to our attention that the Master Trainer Course does not appear on NCFHE database as an accredited course. Upon investigation it became clear that this is only because AAMET is not listed by NCFHE as a Maltese educational institution, as detailed above. We continue to note publicly that the course was recognised by NCFHE Malta as meeting EQF standards. We do this to honour the huge amount of work that went into meeting external accreditation standards.
AAMET Accreditation is the extra level of accountability we've put in place to ensure that our member Trainers and Practitioners are meeting AAMET certification standards and competencies.